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Stories from the Road

Fundraising for Forty Years

100-mile Rider Todd Porter adventured to make fundraising fun for his second BellRinger with a month long campaign for his milestone birthday.

3 min read
BellRinger rider posing in front of the bike ride finish line

For Todd Porter, his 40th Birthday was much more than a milestone. Over the course of the last month, Todd launched his own personal fundraising campaign to raise money for BellRinger and his 100-mile Ride this October.

Todd’s reason for joining BellRinger was multifaceted. It began with his recent move from New York City to Washington, DC back in April of 2020. Being new to the area, he was always looking for ways to be more involved in the community and to meet new people who carried similar interests and values to himself. In part with this, Todd takes pride in his fitness, as he used to be a marathon runner and jumped at any opportunity to push himself physically. He took up cycling more prominently once he moved to the area, and soon fell in love with the sport. Last but not least, Todd has seen what it’s like to watch the people you love face a cancer diagnosis, as both his mother and father are cancer survivors. Cancer will forever be a part of his family, but he’s committed to doing whatever it takes to ensure no one has to battle this disease in the future.

Todd first learned about BellRinger through his role at Georgetown University as a General Manager for the Department of Performing Arts. He was excited about the Ride, but was initially apprehensive about hitting his fundraising commitment. But as he started talking to people about his 100-mile Ride in BellRinger, he realized that having a personal connection to cancer was not uncommon. So many people have lost loved ones, have been treated for cancer themselves, or they knew of someone who was currently battling the disease. For Todd, the seemingly daunting fundraising commitment became more attainable when backed by a shared purpose of ending cancer. In year one, he easily surpassed his goal and raised over $1,600.

After seeing just how attainable it was to hit the fundraising goal in his first year, Todd got to thinking about ways in which he could make the journey to $1,500 fun. And that’s when it hit him — what better way to fundraise than through his milestone 40th birthday? Instead of accepting traditional gifts or celebratory drinks at the bar, he urged his friends and loved ones to support his 100-mile Ride this October. Leveraging social media and the use of personal postcards featuring his photo and narrative, Todd was determined to spread awareness and to rally support in the lead up to BellRinger. Since the onset of his campaign, Todd has raised over $600 towards his goal.

Todd’s first BellRinger experience in 2022 was better than he could have ever imagined. Despite the initial grumpiness and fatigue, the scenic beauty of the Maryland countryside and the united spirit of every Rider and volunteer rejuvenated him and pushed him along when he needed it the most. He finished his 100-mile Ride in some of the most fashionable attire we saw during BellRinger Weekend (where can we buy this?!)!

When asked what he would say to someone who is on the fence about participating in BellRinger, he stated, “The ride itself might be painful. It might test your mental fortitude. But no matter how much fatigue you may feel in that moment, it doesn’t compare to the challenges of someone going through cancer treatment. You can be a little uncomfortable for a couple of hours, as this gesture is helping to save the lives of our friends, family, colleagues, and maybe one day, ourselves. You have nothing to lose.”

July 12, 2023

100% of funds raised support

Academic Health System Partner